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Get Money To Start A Small Business
When starting a business, finding a good idea is half the battle. The other half finances it.
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A good business idea with zero capital does not mean that your road to entrepreneurship is over. There are many ways to start a business with no money. In most cases, all you need is an entrepreneurial mindset: patience, hard work, creativity and the willingness to try new things.
This guide shares with you how to start your own business with minimal cash. The goal? To start making money, later you can reinvest in growth.
From validating your idea to earning your first dollar, here is the plan to start a business with no money.
The first step in starting a business is to develop an idea. If you’re not sure what that might be, here are six creative business ideas you can start with no money.
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The easiest way to start a business without money is to sell your services. Even if they haven’t mastered a specific area, being better than the average person at something means you can start a business that helps them. So start by looking at the things you know how to do better than most. Package that skill into a service, for example:
Since you don’t have the capital yet, start with the things you have, such as your experience, knowledge, skills and resources that you have. These are the best investments to have when you only have $0. Kei Nishida, owner of the Japanese Green Tea Co.
Don’t rule out a service business unless you have a particularly strong skill set. Your time is valuable; busy people often pay an hourly rate for someone else to do tasks they don’t want (or have time) to do. It includes jobs such as:
Many entrepreneurs write off these small business ideas because they are afraid of earning minimum wage. But service-based businesses can be profitable. Some freelance writers make six figures every year within two years of running their business. One window cleaner even reached $250,000 within 12 months.
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Dropshipping is a popular business model for entrepreneurs who want to start a small business with no money. Simply create an online store and choose a dropshipping provider such as DSers or AliExpress. When an order is placed, your e-commerce platform sends the order information to your supplier. It is their job to pick, pack and ship the order to your customer.
As a master’s student, I didn’t have much disposable income, so I decided to learn dropshipping. I decided to dropshipping on Wish, because it wasn’t talked about as often as dropshipping to your own store or to Amazon. Zaid Shahatit, founder of Fighthaus
The best thing about dropshipping is that you can start with a small budget. Instead of buying inventory before it’s sold and storing those items in expensive inventory, suppliers only charge you for the inventory when you sell it. Start with a 3-day free trial and then $5 per month with the starter plan of.
The global market for personal products is estimated to be worth $38 billion. Take advantage of that opportunity, even if you don’t have the money up front to invest in inventory, with a print-on-demand business.
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Print on demand is the process of private labeling products (such as bags, t-shirts or caps) and selling them per order. Vendors like Printful will print your designs in stock, ship it to the customer, and charge you for their service after you receive the money from your customer.
We started with a print-on-demand service, which brought the initial operating investment to $0. Basically, we were just a website to start – to validate the idea. Katheriin Liibert, co-founder of #muhoov
Much like dropshipping, there are minimal costs associated with starting this type of business, as you only pay for the inventory when a customer orders it. There are no storage costs to contend with using the print-on-demand model, making it a valuable option if you’re looking to start a business with $0.
Prefer a more practical way to start a small business? Turn your hobby into a sideline by selling handmade items through your online store or marketplaces like Etsy. This may include:
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We started in a garage, buying powder from websites and getting mixing cans wherever we could. Our first sample was hand delivered with powder in Ziploc bags and a funnel. Carl Starkey, founder of AWSM Sauce
Katrina Bell is an entrepreneur who took this approach when she started a business with no money. Now the owner of The Copper Bell, Katrina chose to sell candles because they “don’t have a steep learning curve, don’t require government oversight and regulation, and can be easily manufactured in larger and larger batches.”
What originally started as a fun sideline eventually became Katrina’s full-time job after she was laid off at the start of the pandemic. “I decided to really take my business online right after that and enjoyed tremendous growth after a few months of full-time work,” she says. “Sales really picked up in the fall of 2020, and now I run the business from a commercial production space rather than just from my home.”
Bonus: To earn extra cash when you’re just starting out, package your handmade items in a subscription box. The consistent income you will generate from repeat orders can be reinvested in the production of new inventory, giving you start-up capital without external funding.
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Most of our profits have been reinvested in inventory and advertising. We try to grow at a good pace so that we don’t have to rely on external investment. Francois Mathieu, co-founder of Hojicha Co.
Digital products are something you can create and sell with just an internet connection, making them a great way to start an online business with no money.
Start by identifying an area in which you have more knowledge than the average person. Then do some research online to see what issues people in space are facing. Package your solution in a digital product, for example:
The beauty of digital products is that they are scalable. Create them once and sell them multiple times using the Digital Downloads app. It is no wonder that many entrepreneurs are using digital products as a way to earn passive income.
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The word “influencer” has taken on a life of its own over the past decade. More people are making money from social media than ever before. All it takes is patience, social media knowledge and interesting content to share – three things that can be done for free.
Start by building your social media presence on a popular platform, such as Instagram or TikTok. But don’t get into the hard sell just yet. Followers can earn money when they know, like and trust what you have to say.
Entrepreneurs have used this route to raise money for a product-based business. YouTuber Emma Chamberlain, for example, started posting videos on YouTube back in 2017. She launched her first direct-to-consumer business, Chamberlain Coffee, to capitalize on her audience just two years later.
A business plan is the plan of how you will develop your business. Your content will depend on the low cost business model you have chosen. But in general it includes:
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Do you need help writing yours? Here’s a free business plan template, complete with examples, to help you get started.
The next step in starting a business is choosing a name. It should be catchy, recognizable and most importantly, not already taken. Use this free business name generator for inspiration if you’re stuck.
Remember: the name you choose will serve you for the life of the company. Make sure it’s one you love – and can see scaling with you – to avoid headaches down the road.
The process of starting a business from scratch has been free until now. While it is possible to continue on the $0 path, the smartest investment you can make is in an online store. Your website is the virtual home of your new business—one you can use to educate potential customers about the products or services you sell.
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If you’re really tight on cash, the starter plan is just $5/month after a 3-day free trial. It’s a small price to pay for a good professional website that will help you make your first sale.
Starting a business from scratch is trial and error. Some ideas will be a hit; others will not be as popular as you first thought. Reduce risk by testing your ideas with pre-orders.
Pre-orders work by taking money for items you haven’t produced yet. It gives you money upfront to invest in production, create hype and create a sense of exclusivity. People buy the opportunity to try something new in front of the public.
Remi Martins is an entrepreneur who took this approach. After coming up with the idea for Natural Girl Wigs while working full-time, Remi decided to create an Instagram page to showcase different types of
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